Europe and the IMF urged Donald Trump on Wednesday to step back from the brink of a trade war, after the resignation of his top economic adviser emboldened those encouraging him to push ahead with tariffs on imported steel and aluminum.
Trump plans to impose a duty of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum to counter cheap imports, especially from China, that he says undermine U.S. industry and jobs.
But the move risks retaliatory measures against U.S. exports and further complicates efforts to save the North American Free Trade Area (NAFTA).
“In a so-called trade war … nobody wins, one generally finds losers on both sides,” IMF chief Christine Lagarde said on Wednesday.
The International Monetary Fund head said Canada – the largest supplier of steel and aluminum to the United States – and Europe – whose car exports Trump has threatened to target – are both likely to impose retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.